I’m only reviewing this beer because I have it and I have to drink it to get rid of it. And because I’ve limited myself to only one type of beer a day, this is the one that’s being reviewed. Don’t worry, I will more than make up for my local-rule-breaking tomorrow, when I visit my local Whole Foods for their opening of 28 local beers on tap. Awesome. And local!
I’ll be lucky to get 5o0 words out about the Stiegl Pils made in Salzburg, Austria. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good solid beer, but I think my tastes are changing and I feel myself craving something heartier, more complex, that will challenge my picky taste buds. Regardless, as you will notice from the first photo, it is unbelievably yellow and light with good carbonation and a fabulously thick head of foam. It doesn’t look like there’s much to it, but that bright gold is really eye-catching, especially when held up to the light. There was very light lacing along the glass for the amount of foam, surprisingly.
The smell is rather bland, and I found myself looking for more than there was, thanks to all the other complex brews I’ve been trying. In a nutshell, it smells like a light beer. A little bit of hops, a little malt, a few grains and a pinch of yeast, mix with a tiny bit of lemon way at the bottom, a blade of grass, and just a hint of musk. Beer. After being slightly disappointed in the simpleness of it, I decided to read a few reviews of the beer elsewhere and found that many people (who are much more qualified than I am to review beer) were able to step back and relish in the fact that this was a pure brew. There weren’t any hidden gimmicks, no false flavors, special quirks…it was what it was. One review particularly caught my eye, and I have to quote it here for the sake of it helping me to better understand why some people love beer so much:
Pale lagers, pilsners or otherwise, will not reinvent you the wheel. If you’re expecting the moon for your nose and the stars for your mouth, you’re drinking the wrong kind of beer. To me, these lagers come down to one question: is it clean, unadulterated, palatable and pleasurable? If ‘yes’ then I’m happy with it – which means I’m sure as hell happy with this.
In the end, my eyes were opened to the grand adventure of simplicity, and it further reinforced my original love for the paler pilsners and lighter brews. Seriously, this all happened as I was writing this. I am so happy I have this all down on record in real time. After my revelation, it was much easier to enjoy the Stiegl Pils for what it was: a German pilsner. The taste was light, smooth, crisp and barely dry throughout each sip, leaving a refreshing emptiness in my mouth, which was ready for more instantly.
With nothing more useful to say, if you need the perfect summer afternoon beer, this is it.